09/11/2021 By RuneLite
When master visual artist Bernard Stanley Hoyes was first appointed to create an outdoor stainless-steel sculpture for the Kingston Restoration Walking Museum Project in Jamaica, it was before Covid. The project, sponsored by the Kingston Restoration Company and the Duke Street Refurbishing Project and funded by the Tourism Enhancement Fund was a heartfelt assignment for Hoyes, a native of Jamaica and longtime resident of California.
The manifestation and creation of the 400 pound "Mating Dance of Hummingbirds," now standing on historical Duke Street in downtown Kingston, is a tremendous testimony to perseverance, resilience and the magnetic power of creativity. Hoyes withstood the isolation of quarantine, the scarcity of the pandemic and even his own battle with Covid to rise majestically victorious, much like the hummingbirds, the national birds of Jamaica, atop his monument.
Hoyes, best known for his vibrantly, vivid oils on canvas renditions, is no stranger to sculpture. His six-foot "Roots of Pegasus" bronze figure for a private collector and his eight-foot three-ton granite rock carving of a blue fin tuna, crafted in Fuzhou City in the Fujian Province of China, cemented the artist's ability to encapsulate life-force in a variety of mediums. "Mating Dance of Hummingbirds" maintains his legacy, with two glorious, chrome steel body and winged hummingbirds resting atop a twisted, spiral helix intertwined around a shared axis. The helical structure, like the shape of our DNA, is a symbol of eternity and life, and the foundation of sacred geometry, coded with evolution, infinite growth and longevity. Lucite rods stabilized within the wings also encase solar LED lighting offering enhanced reflective color features that add vitality to his design.
"I sequester myself when creating all the time. For me it provides a confrontation with the chosen medium and discipline I'm working with. But there is a marked difference between self-imposed isolation and an enforced quarantine. Seclusion usually provides me a safe haven, whereas the shut down during Covid created a vibration of eerie inaccessibility," explains Hoyes.
"The entire crafting experience, including me suffering through Covid, and personally packaging and delivery the work, served to intensify the intentions instilled in this art piece. A multi-dimensional metaphor evolved for me. 'Out Of Many, One People,' is Jamaica's national motto. 'The Mating Dance of Hummingbirds' speaks to the ever-evolving procreation of all species, reminding us that we all share common DNA and we are all connected in this together," shares Hoyes.
"The Duke Street Refurbishing Project/Kingston Restoration Company Limited is pleased to have commissioned the sculpture 'Mating Dance of the Hummingbirds' created by artist Bernard Hoyes. The hummingbird is a symbol of the unique biodiversity of our country. The majestic helix structure reflects the resilience and strength of our people in the face of adversity," notes Dr. Blossom O'Meally-Nelson CD WGE, Project Manager of the Duke Street Refurbishing Project.
"This work of art is a reminder of our interdependence as a nation and the importance of understanding and preserving our history, culture and self-identity. This iconic work will serve as a symbol of the importance of continued collaboration among stakeholders and partners for the redevelopment of Kingston and the establishment of the Duke Street Legal and Financial Business District," adds Dayton Wood, Project Coordinator, Kingston Restoration Company Limited.
Born into a family rooted in Jamaica's revivalist church, Bernard Hoyes' memories of religion and rituals have influenced his artistic productivity throughout his life. His celebration of traditional African religion, spirituality and myths continues to find universal appeal, exciting audiences worldwide. Oprah Winfrey, Steve Harvey, Natalie Cole and the National Urban League are among his collectors. Selections of Hoyes' work have been featured in several television shows including the Showtime cult classic series, "Dexter." President Barack Obama has even been photographed in front of his work.
Hoyes' exhibition history spans over 50 years with over 100 exhibitions, 30 of them solo exhibitions, in various countries including his native Jamaica, USA, UK, the Netherlands, and Germany. Some of Hoyes' past exhibitions include "Places and Validation, Art & Progression, The Getty Initiative Pacific Standard Time" in 2010; the "Art in LA 1945-1980" at CAAM in 2011; a feature in "L.A. Rising: SoCal Artists Before 1980," published by the Getty Foundation, and a Multidisciplinary Production "Se7en Paintings, a Story in Performance" which bought seven of Hoyes' iconic paintings from his Revival Series to life on the Ford Stage in Los Angeles in 2012.
Most recent exhibits include the "Evolving Abstraction, 3 Contemporary Artists of the African Diaspora" at the Palm Springs Art Museum in February 2015 and "The Spirit of the Land through Climate Change" at the San Bernardino County Museum, Redlands, CA from November 2019 thru to March 2020.
"The Mating Dance of Hummingbirds" continues to soar the ever-evolving passion and visions of Bernard Stanley Hoyes. Whether sculpting or painting, as a multidisciplinary artist, Hoyes' work is imbued with spiritually that nurtures the soul.
Visit his online gallery at http://www.bernardhoyes.com/ and sit with the hummingbirds, whenever traveling to Kingston, Jamaica!